If you are looking for a fun-loving dog breed with a zest for life (and low to no shedding) then the Goldendoodle might be perfect for your family. But are Goldendoodles good with kids?
The basics of a Goldendoodle are simple. You cross an energetic and life-loving Goldendoodle with a Poodle. Both breeds are wicked-smart, eager to train, and love being part of your family. Different versions of the Goldendoodle are low to no shedding!
Energetic non-shedding dogs do have some downsides, like the fact that despite their excellent low odour coat there are reasons your Goldendoodle might end up stinky.
You also need to keep your active dog busy with brain games and activities otherwise such an exuberant dog can get bored. A bored dog can have problems like excessive barking, which you can fix but is a challenge for breeds like Goldendoodles.
In general though, Goldendoodles are an excellent Poodle cross breed that can fit in with pretty much any family situation. Training can be effective and (relatively) easy as they are eager to please. In fact training can be easier for a Goldendoodle than a Labradoodle. (Goldendoodle Vs Labradoodle breed comparison)
The one area that you need to carefully plan for with a Goldendoodle is their place in your family.
As a family dog Goldendoodles are a popular choice. Their temperament can be almost ideal for many households. There are however a variety of factors to consider before bringing any dog into the family home.
In this article we discuss what you need to know about your kids and Goldendoodles before adding a Goldendoodle to your family.
Are Goldendoodles Good With Kids?
Goldendoodles are good with kids. They are well known to be great with children and many Goldendoodles are extremely patient. Goldendoodles are typically a gentle dog.
Dogs that are intelligent can be either easy or extremely difficult to train and make part of the family unit. Goldendoodles are smart, but this is coupled with a willingness to please. A dog that is eager to please is much easier to train using positive reinforcement messages.
Goldendoodles are so good with kids, and so eager to please – that much of the reinforcement training can safely be conducted by the kids themselves! Teaching a dog tricks when you have slightly older kids is great, their enthusiasm for repetitive treating and tricking really helps to cement entertaining party commands and tricks.
All dogs are different and temperament guides are general in nature – but the vast majority of experiences people have introducing their kids to Goldendoodles are positive. This is provided that the introduction is done thoughtfully with planning.
There are a few points to remember and apply to your own situation however before you pick a Goldendoodle to join your family.
Are Goldendoodles Good With Toddlers?
Dogs in general can be fairly ok with toddlers. Goldendoodles are also known to be reasonably tolerant of toddlers. It is rare that Goldendoodles will be aggressive or lash out. It can happen!
Puppies are excitable and may ‘mouth at’ (play bite) or react to a toddler that accidentally hurts or surprises it. This can of course cause issues and frighten either the baby or dog.
Toddlers and Goldendodoles need their own space. As long as they both have space and feel safe – they typically can get along well. There are tips you can follow to ensure a happy family.
I asked the experts how they would introduce a Goldendoodle to toddlers or younger children.
How To Introduce A Goldendoodles To Younger Kids or Toddlers
Sometimes a Goldendoodle will join a family that has babies or toddlers. Sometimes the baby might join a family that already has a Goldendoodle!
Life happens, and you and your dog will be able to adapt to the new situation. However there are a few safety and happiness considerations to ensure a healthy home for your whole tribe.
I asked Dog Behaviour Expert Michelle Stern her thoughts on introducing puppies to younger kids or toddlers. She is a Professional Dog Trainer, a teacher of 16 years, a mom, and runs Pooch Parenting – a business focused on helping families who are parenting dogs and kids at the same time.
Question: What are the first things to consider when introducing a new puppy like a Goldendoodle to a household?
Michelle: “The first thing to consider is that parents need to consider the emotional and physical needs of both the kids and of the puppy, itself. Kids and dogs share many traits – they need time to play, they need time to rest, and they need quality time with the adults in the house.”
Question: What can we do to ensure both kids and dogs get what they need?
Michelle: “In order to make these things happen, it’s important that puppies have a space that’s a kid-free zone. Perhaps that’s in a playpen or in a crate. Either way, this is a place for the puppy to retreat and for the kids to leave alone.”
Question: Kids can be pretty full on, how can we let them know that a dog needs a break?
Michelle: “Spend quality time with the kiddos doing things *for* the puppy, but not including the puppy.
Examples of these kinds of activities can include preparing food puzzles for the pup, decorating a poster that reminds the kids to let the dog nap quietly, or turning common chores into a game, such as picking up the kids’ toys so the puppy doesn’t steal them.”
Question: Any other specific tips?
Michelle: “Dogs don’t like to be pestered while they eat, so it’s helpful to feed the dog somewhere off limits to the kiddos.
Plus, mealtimes in a pen or crate can increase the value of being in those places.”
Thanks to Dog Trainer and Behaviour Expert Michelle Stern for taking the time to respond. You can find out more from her and introducing toddlers to dogs at her site Pooch Parenting!
Once your kid is older you can strengthen the bond between your Goldendoodle and your children by giving them tasks to look after the dog.
- Walking the dog
- Filling the water bowl
- Dispensing food
- Daily training with treats
There are lots of ways you can boost interaction between your children and your Groodle. Parenting experts agree that with adequate monitoring and mentorship, performing dog related chores is an excellent way to promote responsibility for your kid.
Tasks that involve looking after something that is reliant on them like a dog can be beneficial in expanding the child’s mindset beyond themselves. You need to monitor this closely, as exercise, water, and routine food consumption are vitally important to a healthy, happy and well behaved Goldendoodle.
Problems With Goldendoodles and Kids
Much of the trouble that people run into with Goldendoodles and childrens is related to the size of the dog and the amount of seemingly boundless energy they can have.
Goldendoodles have a zest for life. They can require up to an hour of activ epaly or exercise every day. They are athletic, and can enjoy jumping. In fact Goldendoodles are so energetic you should be worried if your Goldendoodle starts acting lethargic.
Happy dogs get excited. If this is expressed through jumping or barging, you kids can get swatted around like a fly by a larger Goldendoodle.
Puppies also mouth, nip, and even bite.
All puppies will do some gentle biting at some point. For some dogs we are lucky and they either just bite their toys, or get it out of their system early.
For other dogs it will require dedicated, firm, calm training.
When you have a young child or toddler, they will not know how to react if your Goldendoodle puppy does get mouthy.
Separation of the puppy and toddler via a crate or fenced off area is the solution if this gets out of hand. Otherwise you need to be keenly monitoring all interactions to ensure the puppy does not cause an unhelpful negative reaction in your child.
Goldendoodle Puppies are Small
Just like Goldendoodles, kids are often supercharged balls of energy. Excited play can result in them tripping, falling, kicking (accidentally hopefully) or tumbling onto the puppy.
Puppies and Teacup Goldendoodles are tiny. They are fragile, and they can get injured accidentally by rough play.
With older kids and older Goldendoodles this is rarely a concern, but you need to be incredibly careful with a youthful pairing. It means even more close monitoring when they spend time together.
Asthma, Allergies and Goldendoodles
If you are worried about how your child with asthma or allergies will go with a dog, a Goldendoodle might be a great match.
After checking with your doctor first, testing with some limited time spent together with a dog can be a way to make sure there is no sensitivity or reaction to the dog.
There is no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog, but a non-shedding (and therefore low dander) Goldendoodle will come close.
Non-shedding Goldendoodles do tend to cause less hassle for allergy sufferers. Often kids will have a decreasing degree of sensitivity or reaction to dogs as they get older, but you can’t rely on that.
Goldendoodles with a curly coat or wavy coat are less likely to shed than the other coat types. Find out more about Goldendoodle coat types here.
Goldendoodles and Children Conclusion
Goldendoodles are generally good with kids. Many owners and breeders report huge success introducing their kids and toddlers to Goldendoodles. The temperament, zest for life, and energy can make the Goldendoodle breed an excellent fit for your active family.
Goldendoodles live for a long time, so you need to bemindful of future family dynamic changes when adding one to your family.
Here is a detailed breed comparison showing the similarities and differences between the Goldendoodle and a Labradoodle. The primary differences will be physical build, and temperament.
A Bernedoodle is a giant cross breed that is also brimming with energy. They can be good with kids just like the Goldendoodle. See a detailed comparison of the Goldendoodle Vs Bernedoodle to see which breed suits your family best.